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TV Critic’s Corner

‘90210’ reboot could benefit from another reboot

From left: “BH90210” stars Gabrielle Carteris, Brian Austin Green, Shannen Doherty, Ian Ziering, Jennie Garth, and Tori Spelling in Beverly Hills, Calif., earlier in August.
From left: “BH90210” stars Gabrielle Carteris, Brian Austin Green, Shannen Doherty, Ian Ziering, Jennie Garth, and Tori Spelling in Beverly Hills, Calif., earlier in August.Amy Sussman/Getty Images/Getty Images

The meta six-part “Beverly Hills 90210” reboot, called “BH90210,” has been dropping in the ratings each week, starting with 4 million total viewers and falling to just under 2 million for the fourth episode.

I can’t say I’m surprised. For one thing, each episode is too long at an hour’s length. I understand that the original “90210” was an hour long, but this is a different beast — a light comedy with in-jokes — that fares better in a more sitcom-like space.

And then, despite the cleverness of being a show about a show that was a show a long time ago, the story lines are fairly dumb. Basically, the gang reunites, all kinds of old interpersonal chemistry gets kicked up, as each one deals with personal issues. It’s pretty obvious where each story line is heading. There was little to entice those who tuned in for the premiere, to get a glimpse at everyone, to return for more.

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I do like the idea of coming at the revival trend with a different kind of format. I respect “BH90210” and all the actors for going in that direction. But a few writers less dazzled by the cast — and more focused on some good material — might have helped an awful lot.


Matthew Gilbert can be reached at gilbert@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.